Ed Mangano

Thomas A. Ferrara/Newsday/MCT/Sipa USA

Jury Picked For Ex-Nassau County Executive's Corruption Trial

March 12, 2018 - 11:25 am

CENTRAL ISLIP, N.Y. (WCBS 880) -- A jury has been impaneled in the bribery trial for former Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano and his wife, Linda.

As WCBS 880's Ethan Harp reported, Mangano is accused of taking bribes and kickbacks to help restaurant owner Harendra Singh obtain guaranteed loans through Oyster Bay government. The former executive allegedly received fancy vacations, a pricey watch, and new hardwood floors for his Bethpage house, CBS New York reported last year.

Mangano’s wife is charged with taking a $450,000 a year no-show job.

Seventy prospective jurors packed the courtroom at the federal courthouse in Central Islip on Monday, WCBS 880's Sophia Hall reported. Before asking the men and women any questions, the judge told the potential jurors this will be an eight-week trial and their role would be critical to the judicial system.

The judge then asked each person the same questions: What do you do in your spare time? What television shows do you watch? What do you do for a living and who are two historical or public figures you admire? Some of the answers included Princess Diana, Albert Einstein and President John F. Kennedy.

A jury was selected by around 5 p.m.

Opening statements are set to begin on Wednesday, and the first witness will be called Thursday morning, Hall reported.

Also charged in the case and going to trial is former Oyster Bay Town Supervisor John Venditto.

A 13-count indictment charges the defendants with extortion, bribery, fraud, and obstruction.

The Manganos said they were longtime friends with the businessman, and they said any favors were because of their personal ties.

The trial was supposed to begin months ago, but got pushed back.

After a court appearance in December, Mangano told WCBS 880’s Sophia Hall he was staying upbeat.

“I’m always positive,” Mangano said at the time. “I’ve done nothing wrong and I’m a positive person in life.”

All three defendants have pleaded not guilty.